Minions: The Rise of Gru Minions: The Rise of Gru

The Minions have finally met the ultimate villain: coronavirus.

Due to the global pandemic, Universal Pictures has pulled the July 3rd release date for Illumination’s Minions: The Rise of Gru. Even if movie theaters re-open by that time, the studio producing the film has revealed that they can’t finish the film in time for its release.

While Illumination Entertainment is an American company, the animation for its films is produced at Paris-based subsidiary Illumination Mac Guff. That studio has been temporarily closed amidst a strict nationwide lockdown throughout France.

A new release date has not been scheduled at this time.

Chris Meledandri, founder and CEO of Illumination Entertainment, released the following statement this afternoon:

In response to the severity of the situation in France, we are temporarily closing our Illumination Mac Guff studio in Paris. With this decision we are abiding by the French Government’s guidelines and doing everything possible to slow the spread of the virus as we care for our artists and their families. This means we will be unable to finish Minions: The Rise of Gru in time for our planned global releases in late June and early July. While we all grapple with the enormity of this crisis, we must put the safety and protection of our employees above all. We look forward to finding a new release date for the return of Gru and the Minions.

Cancelling the release of the Minions sequel is a big blow for Universal, which expected the title to be one of its biggest films of the year. Despicable Me is already the highest-grossing animation franchise in history, bringing in over $3.7 billion at the global box office. The first Minions outperformed all the Despicable Me installments with a $1.16 billion cume, and currently stands as the highest-grossing non-Disney animated film of all time.

Kyle Balda, who co-directed Minions and Despicable Me 3, is lead director on the upcoming film, with Brad Ableson and Jonathan del Val serving as co-directors.

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